Football had a night to remember at the 2019 Australian Migration and Settlement Awards in Canberra, dominating the Sport Leadership category, providing all three finalists.
The ALDI MiniRoos Multicultural Settlement program, which offers football for newly arrived migrant, refugee and asylum seeker children, picked up the coveted award to the delight of Football Federation Australia (FFA) Chief Executive, David Gallop AM.
“FFA is extremely pleased to have won this award, which acknowledges the important role football plays in multicultural inclusion in Australia.
“The ALDI MiniRoos Multicultural Settlement Program is a real partnership between football at all levels, and I’d like to thank every organisation that has played its part in developing and delivering this program in association with FFA.
“Many congratulations in particular to Football NSW, Football Victoria, Football Queensland and Western Sydney Wanderers FC,” Gallop added.
The program aims to enhance social inclusion and connection by creating strong, inclusive, and culturally diverse football programs and environments that benefit newly arrived families and strengthen the general football community.
Started in July 2018 and funded by the Commonwealth government, it has been supported through collaboration with a number of peak multicultural agencies, ACCESS Community Services, Centre for Multicultural Youth, CORE Community Services, Settlement Services International and Welcome to Australia.
Migration Council Australia organised the glittering biennial awards, held in the Great Hall at Parliament House, and Chair Innes Willox congratulated FFA on its achievement.
“This Football Federation Australia initiative has made a significant contribution to assisting new arrival refugees and their families into Australian society, through the power of sport.
“Football is the game that all cultures know and love and offering ‘The World Game’ to 4-11 year olds not only provides them with a great introduction to this country, enabling them to make new friends, it provides the perfect opportunity to integrate whole families into the local community,” Willox concluded.